Cio che Dio vuole, io voglio – What God Wills, I Will
The Dormer family was the earliest “noble” family of Wing, and resided at Ascott House. A notable aspect about the family is that they were Catholic – in challenging times the Dormers were able to successfully retain their faith with minimal persecution.
Below is an outline of the descent of the various titles and assets that the Dormers held associated specifically with Wing, useful for determining exactly which Lord Dormer, Lady Dormer, Baron Dormer, Sir Robert or Sir William is being referred to at any given time! Hyperlinks will take you to the family tree of that individual along with more detailed information (where known). Some additional individuals, not specifically connected with Wing, have been included in order to place our Wing Dormers in context.
|Geffrey Dormer||m. Ursula|
|of West Wycombe, Bucks?|
|William Dormer||m. Jane Lancellyn|
|of West Wycombe, Bucks|
|Sir Robert Dormer||m. Jane Newdigate|
|? – 1552||purchased manor of Wenge 1515, inclosed Wing Park and built Ascott House|
|granted advowson & rectory of Wing 1544|
|monument in north aisle of All Saints Church|
|Sir William Dormer||m. Mary Sidney, Dorothy Catesby|
|1503? (Eythrope) – 1575 (Wing)||monument in apse of All Saints Church|
|Robert Lord Dormer||m. Elizabeth Browne|
|1551 – 1616 (Wing)||High Sheriff of Buckingham 1585|
|made Baron Dormer of Wenge 1615|
|monument in apse of All Saints Church|
|Sir William Dormer||m. Alice Molyneux|
|1586 – 1616 (Wing)||never held baronetcy as predeceased his father|
|Robert Lord Dormer||m. Anne Sophia Herbert|
|1610 – 1643||made Earl of Carnarvon 1628|
|made Viscount Ascott 1628|
|died at Battle of Newbury|
|Charles Lord Dormer||m. Elizabeth Capell, Mary Montague|
|1632 – 1709||2nd Earl of Carnarvon & 2nd Viscount Ascott|
As Charles Lord Dormer had no surviving sons, the titles of Earl of Carnarvon and Viscount Ascott became extinct upon his death. The barony and title of Lord Dormer did not, reverting to other branches of the family who were not based at Wing and had no connection to the village beyond the title Baron of Wing. Control of the manor of Wing and Ascott House passed down to Charles’ eldest grandson, the son of his daughter Elizabeth who had married Philip Stanhope 2nd Earl of Chesterfield.
|Philip Stanhope||3rd Earl of Chesterfield|
|1672 – 1726|
|Sir William Stanhope||2nd son of 3rd Earl of Chesterfield|
|1702 – 1772||Was given the manor of Wing by his father, but allowed Ascott House to fall into disrepair from 1720, and in 1727 sold the deer and felled the trees for timber (some of this timber went to Fenny Stratford and was used to build the church there). He died with no sons so the property reverted back to his older brother.|
|Philip Dormer Stanhope||4th Earl of Chesterfield (formerly Lord Stanhope)|
|1694 – 1773||Politician and author of Letters To His Son. This illegitimate son (and only child) predeceased him, and he subsequently adopted his godson Philip Stanhope.|
|Philip Stanhope||5th Earl of Chesterfield (adopted son of Philip Dormer Stanhope)|
|1755-1815||Around 1800 the foundations of Ascott House were finally cleared away and the bricks used for road repairs around Wing.|
|George Stanhope||6th Earl of Chesterfield|
|1805-1866||Sold Ascott House to J B Harcourt by 1847|
There are two historical charities established by Dormer family members for the benefit of Wing residents.
Dame Dorothy Pelham (formerly Dame Dorothy Dormer) established the Almshouses, also known as Dormer’s Hospital, in 1596. The building provided accommodation for eight men and women and by 1853 the inmates were receiving 4s a week to support themselves. The Grade II listed building still exists (some present-day photos are here) on the corner of Aylesbury Road and High Street, was converted from eight flats to four in the 1800s, and further renovated in 1982.
Lady Mary Carnarvon bequeathed the sum of £50 to the parish upon her death in 1709. In 1714 this was combined with other funds provided by William Hoare and invested in a field of about six acres at Burcott. The rental from this was used for clothing and blankets for the poor of the parish.
The Visitations of Buckinghamshire 1634, pp 40-43
The Complete Peerage of England Scotland Ireland Great Britain and the United Kingdom, The St. Catherine Press Ltd., 1910-1916, pp 44-45 and 412-415
Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press 2004 (1st Earl of Carnarvon & Dame Dorothy Pelham)
A History of the County of Buckingham: Volume 3 (1925), pp. 449-58
Lipscomb’s History & Antiquities of the County of Buckingham Vol 3 1847
Parish registers of All Saints Church, Wing
Memorial inscriptions of All Saints Church, Wing